Helping to meet the boom in demand for geology graduates is the aim of a five new scholarships for students from the Hunter Valley thanks to a $100,000 donation from Doyles Creek Mining.
The scholarships, which are valued at up to $7,000 for each student per year for three years, are to help students who want to pursue a career in geology or earth sciences.
The winners of the scholarships include Adam Keenan, Kate Gyler and Megan Hobbs from Cessnock, Joshua Kirk from Scone and Josephine Moore from Muswellbrook.
Scholarship winner Josephine Moore said she was extremely grateful to win the scholarship as it helped relieve the financial strain of paying for her university studies.
"I don't have to worry now about where I'm going to get the money to buy my textbooks. It's a huge relief. I've also been able to move closer to the University so I don't have to spend as much time travelling and as much money on fuel."
University of Newcastle Foundation CEO Louise O'Connell said the new scholarships would not only help the students financially but also assist the industry to overcome its employment crisis."We wish to thank Doyles Creek Mining for its donation. We want to attract more high quality students to the University and offering scholarships to students is a great incentive to them to choose our degrees."
Doyles Creek Mining Managing Director Glen Lewis said the company was committed to supporting the scholarship program.
"Doyles Creek is pleased to be playing its part in helping provide new educational and practical experience opportunities for emerging talent in the important field of earth sciences.
"With a focus on attracting students from the Hunter Valley, Doyles Creek Mining wishes to give something back to the community. The best gift is the gift of knowledge and wisdom developed through education."
Geology graduates generally find employment in a range of areas such as exploration or as mining geologists, environmental consultants, geological surveyors, research scientists, and in education and environmental management.
Anyone wishing to become scholarship donor can contact the UON Foundation on (02) 4921 7453 or visit www.newcastle.edu.au/foundation for more information.
Media opportunity: The students and their parents have been invited to a lunch hosted by Doyles Creek Mining at 12pm on Wednesday 29 September at the Frances Philip Motel in Singleton to congratulate them on winning the scholarships.
About the UON Foundation:
The UON Foundation is the platform for philanthropic support for the University of Newcastle. Donations help fund student scholarships, academic positions and research. The Foundation also aims to create and sustain relationships between the community, business, alumni and the University.